By marcussamuelsson.com | August 8, 2011

Photo: penguincakes

With Africa still on our mind, we’ve pulled this super easy African recipe that uses a very versatile and in-season vegetable, the eggplant. This is a great Meatless Monday recipe from South Africa that can be used as an appetizer or a side dish. The savory batter on the eggplant adds the perfect spice to this fried treat.

Adapted from one of my favorite African cookbooks, The Africa Cookbook, by Jessica B. Harris

Batter-Fried Eggplant Recipe

Servings: 4


  • 2 large eggplants
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil, for frying
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil


1. Wash the eggplants and cut them into 1-inch slices. Place them in a bowl and sprinkle them with the salt, and allow them to sit for 15 minutes to render some of their liquid and bitterness.

2. Heat the oil for frying in a heavy skillet over high heat and prepare a batter by mixing together the remaining ingredients.

3. When ready to fry, drop the eggplant slices, a few at a time, into the batter, making sure that they are well coated, and fry, turning once, for 3 to 5 minutes on each side. Drain on paper towel and sprinkle with a dash more of salt. Serve hot.

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